We all have a particular song guaranteed to lift our mood and boost our spirits, or melt our stress away…and we have all been programmed to react to different styles of music in a certain way.
From TV and radio, to shopping trips and public events, we are exposed to music in all areas of our life which has an impact on our mood and behaviour. As an event planner, it is important that we understand this as a strategy for creating profitable results for our clients. According to music therapist Adam Sankowski, of the Harvard Medical School in Massachusetts General Hospital, music is an easy way to manage not only our feelings, but how we function. “Our brains and bodies are hardwired for music,” he says. “This is something neurological research has increasingly supported. Through brain-scanning technology, researchers can now clearly see multiple parts of the brain light up when someone listens to music. “Unlike other functions located in specific areas of the brain, there isn’t a music-specific area of the brain. That is, the entire brain is music-specific.” This means that using music to affect our moods can be incredibly powerful. “Imagine watching a horror movie without any music in it. How would you know that you’re about to be scared?
Conversely, every sporting event uses music to pump up the crowd. Music is used throughout the world to manipulate our moods. So how can we use this within the event industry? In a nutshell, fast paced or loud music makes people move faster, A slow beat generally slows down the pace, however there has been extensive research into how various types of music in an environment makes us react (although I’m not sure the age-old muzak telephone hold music has the desired calming effect on me!). But the first and most important questions to ask are; “What event are you holding and how do you want your guests to feel…?”
- Sporting Event
This will be a high energy event and people will want to feel excited so you’ll no doubt want to hype up the groups of friends there to celebrate, by creating a buzz with a faster dance or rock band with plenty of guitar riffs such as Riot 21
Long gone are the ‘death by powerpoint’ days and companies now look for ways to leave their attendees energised and inspired. Conferences can take on their own themes and make the most of the experiential entertainment options to bring delegates into the midst of the atmosphere. Research also shows that we are most susceptible to subtle cues such as music if we’re tired or mentally overloaded, so break time at a conference is a perfect opportunity to create the mood you want, and the feeling you would like your delegates to associate with your brand. Roaming acts such as our Busking Belles can bring an energy boost to the day. Music can also be a powerful tool to use for key note speakers; a blast of a modern song with a strong beat can change the pace and give a little injection of fun and energy before a presentation.
- Awards Ceremony
An evening ceremony often follows a daytime conference, and delegates have had chance to freshen up and change, before heading back down for dinner, awards and networking. This can be at the end of a long day and choosing mood music carefully can leave your guests with an uplifting evening, even if they don’t win! It can be tricky to keep everyone’s attention after dinner so an upbeat and visual act like The Polka Dots performing numbers for the walk-ups, adds some punch to the proceedings (and can also make sure speeches are kept short and sweet!
- Exhibition or Networking Event
For something more relaxed where people may be on their own or small groups, and you would like them to take more time in the venue, then a slower, softer approach like Handful of Hush works well as encourages the feeling of calm, gives a starter for conversation and allows people to feel comfortable lingering.
- Product Launch
I find it fascinating understanding what music can create with regards to mood, but even more so with a launch event; when you are introducing a product to the world and can create a first impression before your attendees have even seen what you are unveiling! It is understood that classical music creates an air of sophistication, so would you like guests to walk into a refined room with the likes of City String Ensemble, or are you hip and trendy, transporting your guests back to the glittering Gatsby era with Jazzy Champagne Swing?
- Seasonal Retail Promotion
We are going to talk in more depth later on about the impact of entertainment in seasonal retail promotions, but for now, picking out the best bits of the coming season and creating ambience around this, invokes happy memories in many such as summer stilt walkers by our friends at Flamin Fun or the guaranteed feel-good vibe that comes from a steel band. What happens in the run-up to Valentines when shops play love songs through the system? The aim is to create those feel-good endorphins and make people happy; when they are happy, they will want to treat themselves and those that they love!
Music and entertainment is just one way to create the perfect ambience for your event. We love helping clients conjure up a winning atmosphere so contact us now to find out how!
- Reference: Quote from Dominic Utton, ‘Boost Your Mood with Music’, The Telegraph
ELLE Entertainment is a small agent with big hearts, passionate about working with clients who are looking for high quality, live acts with the wow factor. If you’re looking for handpicked acts that wow, search here for function bands, burlesque, cabaret and SO MUCH MORE or contact us to talk in more depth to find out what you’re looking for to make your event extra special.